1) How does 3D printing work?
Most 3D printers print "2D" slices that are printed on top of each other and the layers build up to form a 3D shape.
2) Filament not extruding properly?
A: Check the type of filament you're working with and set the proper extruder temperature based on the filament type and heated build platform if applicable; trial and error. Rule of thumb is to set the extruder temperature to the highest temperature for the specific filament, then decrease the temperature by 5°C until properly extruded. Please note this will vary with each 3D printer.
3) How do I figure out the proper setting for my filament?
A: Try to first do a test print of a cube. Here's an example: www.thingiverse.com/thing:24238
Use standard speed settings, and set the extrusion temperature to the minimum recommended extrusion temperature for the filament you’re using and the heat bed to zero. We would suggest using blue painters tape. If you weren't already using blue painters tape then you will have to align the bed again to make up for the thickness of the blue painters tape. Once that is all set up, move forward with the test print. Do multiple test prints until you reach the desired quality by increasing the extrusion temperature by 5 degrees. Just a side note, the extrusion temperature will vary based on the ambient temperature that the room you're printing in is at.
4) How do I do a test print of a cube?
A: Here is an example and steps that you can take to do a test print: www.thingiverse.com/thing:24238
5) I'm experiencing a lot of warping and shrinking after my product cools. Why does this happen?
A: If your product is warping too much, it most likely is because the extrusion temperature is too high, the temperature for the build platform is too high, or a combination of both.
6) How do I store my filament?
A: Most filaments tend to absorb moisture from the air; because of this your filament can become brittle and slowly degrade the quality. It's recommended to keep unused filament and store it in a storage container or zip lock bag with a desiccant.
7) Won't the print stick to the build platform?
A: Ensure the bed is leveled, clean, extrusion and bed temperature is dialed in correctly for the filament you’re using. You may need to use blue painters tape, kapton tape, hairspray, or ABS sludge to help the print stick to the bed. A combination of what’s mentioned is recommended depending on the filament material.
8) What is ABS sludge and how do I create it?
A: ABS sludge is a mixture of acetone and ABS scraps. Create the mixture in a well-ventilated area, preferably outside. Using this sludge will make the print stick to the build platform really well and may be difficult to remove the print. Use at your own discretion, and a plastic scraper will come in handy.
9) I use the same settings for this other brand and it works fine, but with your brand it doesn't. Why does this happen?
A: Every manufacturer has its formula for 3D printer filaments; therefore the extrusion temperature will vary from brand to brand.